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Tuesday 29 March 2016

Anyaoku decries wastage of Nigeria’s budget

Anyaoku decries wastage of Nigeria’s budget

Emeka Anyaoku

Former Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, Emeka Anyaoku, on Tuesday disclosed that the government spent more than half of its budget on non-productive sector of the economy.

He spoke at the presentation of Amb. Olusola Sanu’s memoir, entitled ‘Audacity on the bound: A diplomatic odyssey’, held at the Kakanfo Inn Ibadan.

Anyaoku said the parliamentary system that Nigeria’s nationalists designed gave little room for massive corruption.

He stressed that the new generation of politicians were exploiting the gaps in the presidential system to defraud the nation.

“The new generation of politicians have exploited the presidential system to operate a system that is a drain pipe on the treasury. It is hard to believe that we now operate a system where we now have more than 3000 advisers at the federal, state and local government levels.

“States that have no internally generated revenue have more than 30 advisers, senior special assistants and their assistants. The shame of Nigeria is imminent that even the chairman of a local government operates the presidential system as entitlement. They have chief of staff, chief protocol officer, press officer and so on.

“The result is that 30 to 40 per cent of our annual budget is spent on the officers. By the time you add other spending on transportation and travelling to it, more than half of the budget is spent on non-productive sector of the economy.” he said

Anyaoku  has advised President Muhammadu Buhari to maintain his anti-devaluation of Naira posture for socio-economic development of Nigeria.

Anyaoku equally decried the proliferation of political office in Nigeria, saying such appointment remain a drain pipe for resources in Nigeria.

Speaking on the state of Nigeria economy, former Secretary General of the Commonwealth, disclosed that he was not yet convinced that the devaluation of Naira, as being canvassed by some individuals and groups, will serve the national interest of Nigerians.

He admitted that the situation in the country required drastic measures, calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to stick to his anti-devaluation posture.

“What the president needs to do is to constitute team of economic experts who will advise him on  how best to address the situation” he said

On the proliferation of political appointee, Anyaoku decried a situation where state and local government officials have a long list of special advisers.

He said:” This has become an avenue for wasting of resources of Nigeria which could have been use for developmental projects that will benefit mankind.”

Anyaoku said the anomaly must be reversed in order for the country to enjoy dividends of democracy.

He called for restructuring of Nigeria from the present 36 states to 12 federal structures of six regions.

The former Commonwealth Secretary-General, described Amb. Sanu as a brilliant diplomat with impeccable record.

“His brilliance was not unexpected because he had educational background in two of the world’s best institutions. His intellectual background was certainly one of the reasons for the outstanding success of his diplomatic policies.” he said

Dignitaries in attendance includes; the Olubadan of Ibadan land, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo, Alani of Ido-Ani, Oba Olufemi Olutoye, Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi, was represented by Alhaji Aliyu Mohammed.

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